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Science & Technology

42 new 'mystery chemicals' found in humans

March 17, 2021 | Comment icon 6 comments

The conveniences of modern life expose us to a wide range of chemicals. Image Credit: sxc.hu
Scientists have discovered dozens of previously unseen chemicals that most of us carry within our own bodies.
The study, which was conducted by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, discovered a total of 55 chemicals that had never been reported in people before.

Out of these, 42 of them were classed as 'mystery chemicals' because it was unclear exactly where they had come from or what impact they might be having. It is believed that most of them made their way into the body from various consumer products or industrial processes.

They were even found in the blood and placentas of pregnant women.

It is important to note however that these chemicals have likely been with us for years.
"These chemicals have probably been in people for quite some time, but our technology is now helping us to identify more of them," said Professor Tracey J. Woodruff.

"It is alarming that we keep seeing certain chemicals travel from pregnant women to their children, which means these chemicals can be with us for generations."

Previously identified chemicals found within the human body include those found in pesticides, cosmetic products, flame retardants, various pharmaceuticals and PFAS compounds.

Their presence is a direct result of our use, consumption of and interactions with them in our everyday lives and it seems unlikely that this will change anytime soon.

Exactly what type of effect they may be having on us however remains unclear.

Source: Phys.org | Comments (6)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by OverSword 9 months ago
Holy smokes.  And we wonder about crashing testosterone levels, skyrocketing autism rates, unprecedented digestive issues, etc....  
Comment icon #2 Posted by Eldorado 9 months ago
First, autism is increasing because we are diagnosing milder forms. This is reflected in the term autism spectrum disorders because it includes such a broad spectrum of children that we, in the medical profession, never would have included before. At first, only children with ‘classic autism’—no words, in their own world, and focused solely on repetitive behaviors—would have been diagnosed. Then we included children with some language but with serious problems socializing whose special interests—cars, trains, wheels, Toy Story, LEGOs, YouTube—took them out of social interaction. Now we have ex... [More]
Comment icon #3 Posted by Seti42 9 months ago
I dislike 'articles' like this because they don't actually say anything, and they fuel the paranoid delusions/conspiracy theories of the entire anti-science and anti-medicine crowd. OMG! CHEMICALS! Yeah, and dihydrogen monoxide is highly corrosive and fatal if inhaled.
Comment icon #4 Posted by mesuma 9 months ago
Sounds dangerous.  Cheers for the warning.
Comment icon #5 Posted by Hyperionxvii 9 months ago
Sounds reasonable to me. 
Comment icon #6 Posted by qxcontinuum 9 months ago
I think our entire body has all the chemicals found on earth and universe hence where the our bodies are just star dust is coming from. Also our bodies do emit radiation non stop, so exposure to x rays a couple of time in life would be just a spec comparing to the levels we live every day.

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